Ryanair DAC is an Irish ultra-low-cost carrier founded in 1984. It is headquartered in Ireland and has its primary operational bases at Dublin and London Stansted airports. It forms the largest part of the Ryanair Holdings family of airlines and has Ryanair UK, Buzz, Lauda Europe, and Malta Air as sister airlines. It is Ireland’s biggest airline and in 2016 became Europe’s largest budget airline by scheduled passengers flown, carrying more international passengers than any other airline.
Ryanair Group operates more than 400 Boeing 737-800 aircraft. The airline has been characterized by its rapid expansion, a result of the deregulation of the aviation industry in Europe in 1997, and the success of its low-cost business model. Ryanair’s route network serves 40 countries in Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East.
The company has at times been criticized for its poor working conditions, heavy use of extra charges, and tendency to intentionally generate controversy to gain free publicity.
In January 2019, after tense strikes, Ryanair management agreed on a collective labor agreement (CLA) on the application of Belgian Labor laws to its Belgium-based crews (cabin and cockpit). But since then, ACV/CNE unions and BeCA have been into multiple disagreements about the way the company has been applying local legislation in practice.
In January 2023, Ryanair decided not to reopen its Brussels Zaventem base, closed for winter, allegedly due to too high of airport fares reasons. However, the airline will continue to operate 109 routes to/from Charleroi and to/from Brussels Zaventem on aircrafts based outside Belgium. Ryanair has 16 airplanes based in Charleroi. Charleroi is the biggest EU base for Ryanair DAC, heavily contributing to its multi billion € yearly profit.